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TJP Nation Inside & Lege

Feb 24th, 2015 | Category: TJP Newsletter

The 2015 Texas Legislative Session is underway. Keep reading to find out about
the bills that we are supporting.

Texas Jail Project partners with Nation Inside to tell your Jailhouse Stories!

Texas Jail Project kicked off our Jailhouse Stories campaign in 2014, and for the past year we’ve been collecting stories about what happens when people are held in county jails awaiting trial. Now we are excited to announce the launch of a new partnership with Nation Inside.

Nation Inside is a website that connects and supports people all over the United States who are working to challenge mass incarceration. Jailhouse Stories: Effects of Pretrial Detention is our campaign on the Nation Inside website, where anyone who has been impacted by pretrial detention can upload their own video, audio, or written stories, listen to others’ experiences, and learn about how to get involved in the movement to change pretrial practices. Please visit our new endeavor and contribute your story here: Nation Inside Jailhouse Stories.

Thanks to those who have supported us as we get Jailhouse Stories off the ground. We’re looking forward to taking all we’ve learned and expanding in new and promising ways as we work to educate officials, decision makers, and community leaders on how pretrial detention is affecting so many lives all across the Lone Star State.

New Bills to Protect Pregnant Inmates & Their Babies
Each month, 247 Texas county jails report the total number of inmates they hold, including a separate tally of women who are pregnant. On any given day, about 500 of the women in jails across the state are expecting.
Are these women getting the medical care and nutrition they need to have a healthy baby? During labor and childbirth, will a guard shackle them to the bed? How many babies are stillborn? Currently, the answer is “we don’t know.” Clearly, more information is needed.

What we DO know is that often these situations cost the counties resources when babies are born with low birth weight or with medical conditions or dangerous injuries that could have been prevented. There is also longtime effects on traumatized mothers, mostly low level offenders, who often experience poor medical care and degrading treatment. Two very simple bills this legislative session will help gather information and raise awareness of the needs of this special population. Please ask your faith communities and local leaders to support HB 1140 and 1141. Email us at info@texasjailproject.org for more details and read the Austin Chronicle story on these bills.

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